Sarah Ferguson on how she feels ‘free’ at 61 after years of bad press

Sarah Ferguson has been candid about her controversial public image, saying she is finally “free” from “self-sabotaging Sarah.”

Commonly known as Fergie, the mother of Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie, 61, who lives with her ex-husband Prince Andrew at the Royal Lodge in Windsor, has revealed in the September issue of City and Country magazine that she still struggles with her body image.

While discussing her royal past, Prince Andrew’s ex-wife said she felt her late sister-in-law, Princess Diana, was always portrayed as a ‘saint’ while being the ‘sinner’, and joked that she was seen as ‘ bad Fergie’.

The author, whose new Mills & Boon novel Her Heart for a Compass will be published Aug. 3, added that she prides herself on still being in the public eye and has “forgave” her opponents.

And she said she managed to overcome it by taking inspiration from the late Nelson Madela, saying, “One day I arose and thought: Mandela forgave his persecutors; I can certainly forgive and move on.’

The Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson, 61, pictured, told the September issue of Town & Country that she felt “free” from Sarah’s “self-sabotage”, even as she still struggled with the criticism she faced. over the years got

The former royal admitted she still struggles with her body image after years of staring at her appearance in the press.

“When they say you’re the ‘Duchess of Pork’ or that you’re ‘frumpy Fergie,’ you start to believe it,” she said.

“She’s still with me, that person who thinks she’s fat, ugly, and disgusting, and she still needs to get her hair done to talk to you, but she’s not so vocal now.

“The truth is that I am 61 years old and free from the self-sabotage Sarah,” she said.

Ferguson, commonly known as Fergie, pictured with her dog, said she felt the late Princess Diana had always been portrayed as a 'saint', while she was portrayed as a 'sinner'

Ferguson, commonly known as Fergie, pictured with her dog, said she felt the late Princess Diana had always been portrayed as a ‘saint’, while she was portrayed as a ‘sinner’

She compared her late sister-in-law, Princess Diana, who had more positive press coverage: “Diana was always portrayed as the saint and I as the sinner. Bad Fergie sold an awful lot of newspapers.”

This bad press only got worse after the Duchess split from Prince Andrew in 1992, leading to what’s commonly known as “Toegate,” where photos of a topless Fergie kissing her feet by Texan millionaire John Bryan were covered in the press. published.

The photos, which were released when Eugenie and Beatrice visited the Queen with their father in Balmoral, are said to be the reason why Fergie was shunned by the royal family.

Years later, in 2010, Fergie became entangled in a ‘cash-for-access scandal’ in which she reportedly promised a businessman to arrange a meeting with Prince Andrew for a fee of £500,000.

Unbeknownst to the Duchess of York at the time, she was taped by reporters from the now-defunct tabloid New of the World. The Duchess later took legal action to clear her name.

She told the magazine that her defamation lawyer, Paul Tweed, told her, “I think you’re probably the woman in the world who’s had more bad front pages than any other.”

‘I took it as a big compliment. I’m really proud to still be here,” said the Duchess.

Due to her royal fall from favor and her frosty relationship with Buckingham Palace, Fergie was not invited to her cousin Prince William’s wedding to Kate Middleton at Westminster Abbey in 2011.

However, the Duchess revealed that she herself felt she was not “worthy” to attend the event, and left the country.

Queen of glamour.  Fergie admitted she still felt 'fat', 'ugly' and 'disgusting', but her inner critic wasn't quite as vocal (pictured in a leopard dress)

Queen of glamour. Fergie admitted she still felt ‘fat’, ‘ugly’ and ‘disgusting’, but her inner critic wasn’t quite as vocal (pictured in a leopard dress)

“I thought I probably wasn’t worthy to go to their wedding. I took myself to Thailand, actually, to be far away so I could try to heal,” she said.

Peace was restored in 2018 when she was invited to Prince Harry’s wedding to Meghan Markle in Windsor, and later when the Queen and the late Duke of Edinburgh attended her own daughter Princess Eugnie’s wedding in Windsor in October.

She did not comment on the reportedly stormy relationship between her cousins ​​following Prince Harry’s decision to step down as senior royal in 2020.

However, she said Princess Diana, who died in 1997, would have been proud of her two sons and grandchildren, Prince George, who just turned eight, Princess Charlotte, six, Prince Louis, three, Archie, two, and Lilibet, who had just turned eight. turned eight. born in June.

The grandmother and mother of two published a new novel on August 3, Her Heart for a Compass

The grandmother and mother of two published a new novel on August 3, Her Heart for a Compass

With the final season of The Crown focusing on the 1980s, the Duchess shared her surprise at the fact that she was barely portrayed on the show.

“Hello?” she said. “Where’s Fergie?” revealing that she’d reached out to Andy Harries, an executive producer of the Netflix drama royal, to offer some guidance.

I said to him, “Why can’t I help my character?” she said, but her offer was declined.

The full interview was published in the September issue of Town & Country magazine

The full interview was published in the September issue of Town & Country magazine

Now a happy grandmother of one, Ferguson, who has written several children’s books since her divorce and had success with her YouTube series Storytime with Fergie and Friends in 2020 and 2021, hopes her new romantic novel Her Heart For A Compass will be a page turner.

This new story, published by Mills and Boon on August 3, is set in Victorian Britain and follows the adventures of Lady Margaret Montagu Douglas Scott, a character based on Ferguson’s own ancestor.

Although the story is fictional, Ferguson told Town & Country that she put her own voice into every line of the book, which was co-written with Scottish novelist Marguerite Kaye.

“Lady Margaret has helped me become exactly the person who is talking to you now,” she said.

While Fergie steered clear of raunchy scenes for her first opus, she teased that she might add some “bodice ripping” scenes in a second book, which would make the sex-filled bestseller Fifty Shades of Gray pale in comparison.

Speaking on the Town & Country feature, her friend and floral designer Eric Buterbaugh revealed that Fergie was a friend people could always count on.

“[I was holding a dinner to celebrate my 60th birthday] It was a time when Andrew wasn’t having an easy time, but she wouldn’t miss it,” he said.

“She came to London, and that just shows how good she is for friends,” he added.

“I’ve always said she’s like a Labrador Retriever: she likes everyone, and everyone likes her,” he concluded.

After suffering bad press for most of her public life, Ferguson, pictured, said she was proud of still being a public figure

After suffering bad press for most of her public life, Ferguson, pictured, said she was proud of still being a public figure

Duchess of hearts.  Ferguson said she hoped her new novel, published by Mills and Boon, will be a novel, will be a page turner.

Duchess of hearts. Ferguson said she hoped her new novel, published by Mills and Boon, will be a novel, will be a page turner.

Meanwhile, her daughter Princess Eugenie, who gave birth to her son August on February 9, applauded her mother’s carefree nature.

“My childhood and adult life have been enhanced by my mother’s spontaneity. She has always managed to give us the nicest and most incredible upbringing,” she said.

“No is not a word in her language, so if we have a riddle, Mama can give us the strength to see it from the other side,” she added.

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